Nigella seeds are a small and ancient oblong seed believed to be native to the Mediterranean. Through the whims of nature and steady commercial trade they have spread throughout North Africa, Southern Europe and Eastern Asia.
Nigella seeds are the seeds of Nigella Sativa, an annual flowering plant of the Ranunculacae family. Nigella seeds also have multiple names: Black Cumin, Black Sesame and Charnushka. The plant that produces nigella seeds is somewhat sensitive to both climate and soil conditions. It grows best in warm to temperate climates. Production thus is geographically limited to the Middle East, India, Bangladesh, Turkey and Iran.
Nigella seeds have a slightly bitter taste. Some people have told me that they remind them of the taste of pepper, or the bits of onion from an everything bagel, hmmmm. When ground or chewed they release and oregano-like scent.
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